Resolving homelessness is complicated and requires the efforts and participation of all community members.

Community Conversations elevates the voices of those with lived experience, so that they are a part of Santa Cruz County’s solutions to homelessness. 


Through public and private conversations, Community Conversations creates a platform for people with differing perspectives to come together and challenge widely-held belief systems surrounding homelessness. 

When we have an opportunity to come together and learn from one another —especially from those with different life experiences — our understanding and perspectives shift. Supported by the principles of Contact Theory, Community Conversations aims to remind each other of the humanity in all of us, regardless of disagreements. 

The program includes three key aspects to achieve its vision for greater understanding of homelessness and its solutions:

  • Speakers Bureau
  • Story Archive
  • Feedback programs

Community Conversations will prove the impact that conversations have on our understanding of homelessness. Through exposure to other people’s lives, our entire world view can shift.



Community Conversations creates a platform for people with lived expertise to inform the ways in which we discuss and address homelessness. Through storytelling, discussions and relationship building, we aim to challenge the stigmas and biases surrounding homelessness that are present in the community.


The program deepens understanding and dismantles the systemic marginalization and discrimination of people who have or are currently experiencing homelessness.

the community conversations program

For more information about Community Conversations, contact Andrea Feltz, Community Conversations Program Manager, at or 831.226.2516.